The Select Committee held its first public hearing and it was riveting. Chair Bennie Thompson and Vice Chair Liz Cheney ran the 2 hour meeting. They showed new video of 300 coordinated Proud Boys as they went from their mission’s starting point until they broke in, intending to take the Capitol by force. 11 minutes after he gaveled the meeting to order, Bennie Thompson said the attack was an attempted coup, not a spontaneous riot. The plan was to attack and occupy the Capitol and stop the counting of votes. Trump’s only objective for that day was to remain in power. He oversaw a 7 part plan to overturn the election.
They showed video clips of various depositions. Bill Barr testified that he told Trump that the election had not been stolen and that their plan was “bullshit.” Ivanka said she trusted Bill Barr and agreed with him.
After dozens of failed lawsuits and audits, Trump’s criminal squad conspired to use the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers as tactical teams, under the cover of a riot, to kidnap Mike Pence and Nancy Pelosi and prevent the certification of the election. Trump called them (Rudy Giuliani, Mike Flynn, Sidney Powell and others) together at the White House on December 19 to plan and then he sent out an invite in a tweet: Big protest in D.C. on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!
Trump ignored EVERBODY — DOJ, Homeland Security, Republican leadership, staff, advisors, family, and kept Rudy, Flynn and Powell close, spending campaign funds on false ads to convince his followers that the election had been stolen. His misinformation campaign provoked the violence. He sent his own army when he couldn’t co-opt the military. While Trump watched the violence ramp up on TV, he never called Mike Pence to check on him. He didn’t call any military officials or legitimate legislative leaders. He didn’t deploy the National Guard. He didn’t use his power to instruct the Capitol to be defended. As he watched the mob chant, “Hang Mike Pence!” some of his advisors heard him say “Maybe our supporters have the right idea. Mike Pence deserves it.”
Two people testified in person during the public hearing. One was a documentarian who had been hired by the Proud Boys to get everything on video. The other was a police officer who had been knocked out at the very beginning of the breach. She spoke of carnage and a war-like atmosphere as she slipped around in someone else’s blood. She had not been trained for battle. Many of the officers defending the Capitol that day didn’t have the military background to fight that war.
DOJ official Jeffrey Clark, who Trump wanted to take over as Attorney General at the midnight hour, and Congressman Scott Perry refused to testify.
Earlier in the day, Republicans melted down. They’ve got to be really, really nervous because many of them were in on the coup. Liz Cheney said that Scott Perry and many other House members asked for pardons for their role in the coup. They’re still in Congress and running for re-election.
“Tonight, I say this to my Republican colleagues who are defending the indefensible — there will come a day when Donald Trump is gone, but your dishonor will remain.” — Vice Chair Liz Cheney
Kevin McCarthy did a press conference and called the Select Committee the most political and least legitimate committee in history. When asked by a reporter if he still believed what he said after the attack, that Trump was responsible, he said “I think everyone in the country was responsible.” How well did Kevin sleep last night?
“Most Americans are not going to watch this garbage,” Marco Rubio on Fox. How well did Marco sleep last night?
How well did any of the Republicans who frantically tweeted all day sleep last night?
As expected, Fox didn’t cover it. They spent hours trashing a hearing they didn’t let their viewers see. How long do they think they can get away with this? How will they explain Sean Hannity giving Trump’s press secretary talking points before the coup?
“The Fox News blackout of the 1/6 hearings shows that Republicans benefit from a huge propaganda apparatus that hermetically seals off the GOP electorate from damaging truths.” — Greg Sargent
Earlier in the day, Michigan Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Ryan Kelley was arrested for his participation in the Capitol attack on January 6. He was one of the guys carrying a confederate flag, waving people into the Capitol. This will probably only help his campaign.
The dumbest idea in the world almost worked and on top of that Trump could run again.